Josh Kruger, a respected journalist and passionate activist in Philadelphia, met a tragic end when he was fatally shot inside his Point Breeze home early Monday morning. The 39-year-old journalist, known for his work on LGBTQ+ rights, homelessness, HIV, and addiction, succumbed to seven gunshot wounds to his chest and abdomen. The assailant’s identity remains unknown, and no weapon has been recovered as of now.
Friends of Mr. Kruger revealed that he had recently voiced concerns about threats, including an incident where he reported vandalism at his home in late August.
Josh Kruger’s career was marked by his dedicated reporting on crucial social issues, contributing to publications like The Philadelphia Citizen and The Philadelphia Inquirer. He also served the City of Philadelphia for five years and had professional experience in various government roles. His unique perspective, born from lived experiences with homelessness, addiction, HIV, poverty, and trauma, coupled with over a decade of professional involvement in media, politics, and government, made his storytelling impactful and insightful.
In his own words, Josh described himself as a “destroyer of stigma and bureaucratic silos” and a “believer in the common good.” He was known for his love of cats and eco-friendly transportation choices, preferring bicycles and trains over cars.
In recognition of his journalistic prowess, he received the Society of Professional Journalists’ award for newspaper commentary in Pennsylvania in 2014 and 2015.
The circumstances of his death remain unclear. Commissioner Vanore mentioned, “Either the door was open, or the offender knew how to get the door open. We just don’t know yet.”
Mayor Jim Kenney expressed deep sorrow over Josh Kruger’s passing, highlighting his dedication to the city and its residents. The Committee to Protect Journalists also issued a statement calling for a thorough investigation into the killing to determine any potential links to his work. District Attorney Larry Krasner reassured the public that the Philadelphia Police are diligently working to identify the perpetrator behind this tragic incident.